Friday, 9 September 2016

Predictions For Premier League Gameweek Four

It's that time of the week again when I attempt to predict the outcomes of the upcoming Premier League games. I did very well last week with three perfect outcomes, six correct outcomes and only one wrong outcome. As a result I moved back up to second in my predictions league as you can see from the table below.

NameBadgesThis WeekPTS
 1 (2)  Rutland Gooner 5+185290
 2 (6)  Michael Sheehy 6+200285
 3 (1)  Karl-Yngve Lund +75240
 4 (5) sensisoccerworld +135230
 5 (4) goonerdhanesh +115215

Saturday September 10

Manchester United v Manchester City

12.30pm BST, Old Trafford, Manchester 

United scraped an injury time winner away to Hull to keep their 100% start to the season intact. They look more solid in defence this season and more fluent in attack so far too. It's not going to be easy for them against their local rivals, but three points in this game would be a huge boost to their title ambitions.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic looks like the United player most likely to succeed for fantasy managers with all of their defenders worth considering and maybe Anthony Martial too.

City have a 100% record too after beating West Ham in their last game, but at a price as they lost Sergio Aguero to a suspension. I can't say I've been overly impressed with them so far, but Pep Guardiola's influence does seem to be having an effect. With Aguero missing they will probably be more than happy to get a point from this game.

With Aguero out Raheem Sterling could be the City player to have for fantasy managers as he improves under Guardiola while both David Silva and Kevin de Bruyne should be considered too.

I think this will be a very close game and a draw is probably the most likely outcome.

Prediction: 1-1

Arsenal v Southampton 

3pm BST, Emirates Stadium, London

Arsenal got their first win of the season away to Watford in their last game and then added a couple of new players before the transfer window closed. They have started the season slowly and will need to pick up the pace to keep up with the other contenders, but the win over Watford was very promising. Scoring goals doesn't seem to be too much of a problem for them so far, but they will need to tighten up at the back.

Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez have to be the Arsenal players most likely to make a difference for fantasy managers.

Southampton haven't won a game yet, but they have only lost once which was away to United. With a new man in charge since last season it looks like they're taking some time to adjust. This will be a tough game for them, but they will take some confidence from the four points and two clean sheets they got against Arsenal last season.

Southampton players haven't exactly set the world alight for fantasy managers so far, but I still think Dusan Tadic looks a good bet.

I think Southampton will give Arsenal a tough test, but Arsenal should just shade this game.

Prediction: 2-1

Bournemouth v West Bromwich Albion

3pm BST, Dean Court, Bournemouth 

Bournemouth have only taken one point from their first three games and they need to improve quickly if they're going to do as well as they did last season. They have only managed two goals in those games, but they will hope the addition of on loan Jack Wilshere might give them a creative spark. If they can break down a solid West Brom defence they might just get their first win of the season.

I thought Callum Wilson could be the Bournemouth player to impress for fantasy managers this season, but at the moment that doesn't seem likely.

West Brom have started off in a similar fashion to last season with not too many goals in their games. They have kept clean sheets in two of their three games and only United have conceded less goals. Their problems have come at the other end though where they still continue to struggle to find the net.

West Brom's defenders look good for fantasy managers with Ben Foster and Gareth McAuley possibly the best of them.

This has the makings of a low scoring game and a draw is probably the most likely outcome.

Prediction: 1-1

Burnley v Hull City

3pm BST, Turf Moor, Burnley

Burnley have lost two of their first three games, but they did win at home to Liverpool. They failed to score in their other two games though and it looks like the Liverpool result might have been a one off. If they're going to avoid the drop they will need to take as many points as possible at home and a home game against another one of the league's new teams should give them a great chance to do just that.

Andre Grsy looked good when Burnley beat Liverpool, but it's not easy for fantasy managers to pick a Burnley striker while Tom Heaton has done well for them in goal.

Hull lost to a last minute goal at home to United in their last game to put an end to their perfect start to the season. The six points they took in their first two games were very impressive considering the problems they have had. If they could take three points in this game they would definitely feel they are well ahead in the race to beat the drop.

Eldin Jakipovic has done well in goal so far for fantasy managers and he's available at a very good price too.

I think Burnley might just edge this one to go level with Hull on six points.

Prediction: 1-0

Middlesbrough v Crystal Palace 

3pm BST, Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough 

Boro have started life in the Premier League very well with five points from three games. They have only conceded two goals in those games, but they have only scored three. Their run of games to start the season has been pretty kind to them and they will hope to add three more points in this game.

Alvaro Negredo still looks like a pretty good reasonably priced bet for fantasy managers.

Palace managed their first point of the season when a late goal rescued a draw at home to Bournemouth in their last game. They have scored less goals than any other team and the arrival of Christian Benteke has to be a big plus for them. They found goals very hard to come by last season and if that doesn't change it could spell disaster for them.

Benteke could be the player Palace need to get some goals and if so they might get the best out of Wilfried Zaha and Yohan Cabaye too.

I think Boro will continue their impressive start to the season with a narrow victory.

Prediction: 1-0

Stoke City v Tottenham Hotspur 

3pm BST, Bet 365 Stadium, Stoke

Stoke started and ended last season badly and they have continued that form into this season. They are currently at the foot of the table with only one point and no other team has conceded more goals than them. They will have a tough job on their hands getting anything from this game, but they can never be written off at home in particular.

Maybe Wilfried Bony can be the player to get the goals Stoke need and get some points for fantasy managers.

Spurs haven't exactly set the world alight yet, but they are unbeaten with five points from three games. They have drawn with the two Liverpool teams and beaten Palace and will fancy their chances in this game too. They have found goals hard to come by so far and will need players like Harry Kane to step up if they are to score more.

Eric Lamela has started this season as well as he finished last season and he might just be a good bet for fantasy managers along with the Spurs defenders while players like Kane and Dele Alli should come good soon too.

I think this will be yet another close game, but Spurs should have enough to take all three points.

Prediction: 1-2

West Ham United v Watford 

3pm BST, Olympic Stadium, London

West Ham have lost two of their first three games, but they were away to two of the title favourites. They just about won their only home game against Bournemouth and they will fancy their chances in this game too. They have injuries to some key players and could find it hard to match their high finish of last season.

Michail Antonio has been the most impressive West Ham player for fantasy managers so far, but they will hope the return of Dimitri Payet will change that.

Watford got a point in their opening game at Southampton, but have lost at home to two of the title contenders since then. They have managed to score in each game, but no other team has conceded more goals than them so far. They have brought in some good players and will look to improve when their team gels.

Etienne Capoue has been Watford's best performer so far for fantasy managers, but players like Roberto Pereyra, Odion Ighalo, Troy Deeney and Huerelho Gomes could do well too.

I think Watford will make things far from easy for West Ham and might just get a point from this game.

Prediction: 1-1

Liverpool v Leicester City

5.30pm BST, Anfield, Liverpool

Liverpool have been up and down so far to say the least and they have four points from their first three games. All of those games were away from home though and this will be their first game on their home patch. They won't find it easy against Leicester, but this is the sort of game they need to win if they are to be taken seriously.

Phillippe Coutinho still looks like the best fantasy bet in the Liverpool team for me with others such as Daniel Sturridge, Roberto Friminio and Sadio Mane worth considering too.

Leicester got their first win at home to Swansea in their last game, but this will be a much tougher test for them. It's not going to be easy for them to keep pace at the top this season and they cannot afford to fall too far behind early on. I'm sure they would take a point from this game even if they would love all three.

Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez remain the Leicester players to have for fantasy managers.

I think this will be another close game, but Liverpool should just get the better of proceedings

Prediction: 2-1

Sunday September 11

Swansea City v Chelsea

4pm BST, Liberty Stadium, Swansea

Swansea have lost their last two games and they have s tough run of games coming up. They have struggled to score goals so far with only Palace scoring less goals than them. They could do with getting something from this game, but it won't be an easy task for them.

Leroy Fer has started well for fantasy managers with both of Swansea's goals and he's available at a good price too.

Chelsea are one of the three teams with a 100% record before the weekend and they could easily be the only ones before this game. They kept their first clean sheet when they beat Burnley 3-0 in their last game and they're not finding goals hard to come by at the moment. A trip to a team who have lost their last two games gives them the ideal opportunity to keep their 100% record intact.

Eden Hazard looks like the Chelsea player to have while Diego Costa is doing quite well too.

I think Chelsea will continue their perfect start with a narrow victory.

Prediction: 1-2

Monday September 12

Sunderland v Everton

8pm BST, Stadium of Light, Sunderland 

Sunderland have started badly yet again, but they managed to get their first point away to Southampton in their last game. If they are to steer clear of the drop zone they need to take more points at home and the defeat at home to Middlesbrough was not the ideal way to start their home campaign. It could take David Moyes a while to turn things around for them and keeping them up has to be his first priority.

Jermain Defoe looks like the Sunderland player to have again this season while Adnan Januzaj and Patrick van Aanholt are worth considering too.

Everton find themselves in fourth place after taking seven points from their first three games. It's their best start in a long time and a trip to struggling Sunderland affords them the opportunity to keep it going. A point wouldn't be the worst result for them, but I'm sure they will go in search of all three.

Ross Barkley looks like he could have a very good season for fantasy managers while Kevin Mirallas has started well too.

Prediction: 0-1

Finally for today it's still not too late to join my Fantasy League and my Predictions League for the new season. There's a €50 prize for the fantasy league and it's open to anyone to join.

To join my fantasy league go to the official site and set up your team after entering your details. Once you've set up your team go to the league's option and join a private league. The code for my league (Ever Arsenal league) is 64693-22498 and there's already well over 1,000 teams in it.

For my predictions league go to the official site and make your forecasts and then go to the mini leagues option. Go to the join a mini league option (invitation code) and use the code for my league FD6F8-HYH to sign up. After that you can join in the fun of predicting every single game left to play this season.

That's it for this week.

See you next week.

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